Low current, high voltage safety

This forum is for specialized infomation important to the construction and safe operation of the high voltage electrical supplies and related circuitry needed for fusor operation.
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SamKothe
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Low current, high voltage safety

Post by SamKothe » Wed Nov 11, 2020 12:42 am

Hi everyone,
I'm working on a project necessitating high voltages (4-5kVDC) at comparatively low current (1-2mA). There are these high voltage DC/DC converters (https://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/XP ... dwfA%3D%3D) that I found that would seem to do the job beautifully, at an affordable price. The maximum output current is 2mA, which shouldn't be too shocking, but I want to be as safe as possible and I especially want to show that my project is safe.

Essentially, what I need to know is does voltage matter when the current is so heavily limited, in terms of my life? I assume the output voltage would just drop, or the source would shut off if I bridged the output, but would something else happen? Would I die if I grabbed each contact? I felt that this was an appropriate forum to pose this question, as many of you have extensive experience in high voltage.

Thank you in advance for your help! -Sam
Ad astra explodus!
; )

SamKothe
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Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:55 pm
Real name: Samuel Kothe
Location: Washington State, USA

Re: Low current, high voltage safety

Post by SamKothe » Wed Nov 11, 2020 2:21 am

I figure if I put a 14.4 ohm resistor in series with the power supply (12V) and the high voltage generator's input the power would be limited to 10 watts, in case the high voltage generator does not have built in protection.
Ad astra explodus!
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Frank Sanns
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Re: Low current, high voltage safety

Post by Frank Sanns » Wed Nov 11, 2020 3:21 am

You would not want to grab both leads. While there is probably not enough power to stop your heart, you will get a very big surprise. It will bite and bite you hard because at 5KV, that current will flow through your body and it will not be pleasant.

John Futter
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Re: Low current, high voltage safety

Post by John Futter » Wed Nov 11, 2020 4:24 am

Sam
Even these little supplies are lethal if used with an output capacitor
And by this I mean capacitance such as maybe you using a coax cable ie about 30pf per foot not including the capacitance of the last multiplier output stage to connect with

all of these will give a very nasty current spike that could interfere with your heart rhythm---best to make all safe ie no touchy while power applied

SamKothe
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Joined: Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:55 pm
Real name: Samuel Kothe
Location: Washington State, USA

Re: Low current, high voltage safety

Post by SamKothe » Thu Nov 12, 2020 12:02 am

Thank you all so much, this is exactly what I wanted to know.
I'll be sure to be very safe and if possible find an alternative to a high voltage.
-Sam
Ad astra explodus!
; )

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